FCC to Consider Public Safety, Broadband Items at June 22 Meeting

The FCC announced today that it plans to consider at its June 22 meeting three public safety items dealing with the First Responder Network Authority (FirstNet), a new Emergency Alert System (EAS) notification, and the agency’s caller ID rules to help authorities investigate threatening calls. Also on the eight-item agenda are items dealing with granting a company access to the U.S. market for a satellite broadband network, facilitating greater consumer choice for broadband deployment in multiple tenant environments, eliminating payphone regulations, and clarifying information that cable providers must provide subscribers. Commissioners also are scheduled to consider an enforcement action.

In the FirstNet report and order in PS docket 16-269, the Commission plans to establish procedures for reviewing alternative plans filed by states that want to “opt out” and contract to build their own radio access networks (RANs) rather than have FirstNet’s partner, AT&T, Inc., build them. The Commission also plans to consider a notice of proposed rulemaking in PS docket 15-94 that proposes to amend the agency’s EAS rules to add the event code “BLU” for Blue Alerts. The new alert would enable the dissemination of information when law enforcement officers have been killed or seriously injured, are in imminent danger, or are missing.

Rounding out the public safety–related items on the agenda released today is a NPRM in CG docket 91-281 that would seek input on rule changes to allow the disclosure of blocked caller ID information “to aid law enforcement in investigating threatening calls.” It also would leave in place a waiver that is currently in effect for Jewish Community Centers, pending rule changes.

Commissioners also are scheduled to consider an order and declaratory ruling in SAT-LOI-20160428-0041 granting a request from WorldVu Satellites Limited (d/b/a OneWeb) for access to the U.S. market for its proposed non-geostationary satellite (NGSO) fixed-satellite service (FSS) constellation. The company says the United Kingdom-based 720-satellite constellation will allow it to offer global broadband connectivity.

Also on the agenda is a notice of inquiry in GN docket 17-142 to seek input on “ways to facilitate greater consumer choice and enhance broadband deployment in multiple tenant environments (MTEs),” including addressing state and local regulations that inhibit broadband deployment and competition in MTEs and various contractual arrangements between MTE owners and broadband providers, such as exclusive marketing rights, bulk billing services, revenue sharing, and exclusive wiring access.

Meanwhile, an NPRM and order in WC dockets 17-141 and 16-132 and CC docket 96-128 would propose eliminating an annual audit and reporting requirement for carriers that complete calls from pay phones and that would waive the audit and reporting requirement pending an FCC decision whether to eliminate the requirement.

Also teed up for a vote is a declaratory ruling in MB docket 16-126 that would clarify that cable operators may comply with the “written” subscriber-notification requirement in section 76.1602(b) of the FCC’s rules “by distributing the annual notices via e-mail to a verified e-mail address that includes a mechanism for customers to opt out of e-mail delivery and continue to receive paper notices.”

The agenda also includes a vote on an Enforcement Bureau action. Unlike the other items, for legal reasons the FCC does not release the draft text of enforcement actions prior to adoption, to protect parties that have not yet been found liable or apparently liable for violations of the agency’s rules. The meeting is scheduled to start at 10:30 a.m.- Paul Kirby, paul.kirby@wolterskluwer.com; Lynn Stanton, lynn.stanton@wolterskluwer.com

Courtesy TRDaily